Infamy

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Yesterday (today back home) was the 68th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. The New York Times has this great essay, reflecting on what led up to the event. In 1905, that bloated imperialist asshat, Teddy Roosevelt, won the Nobel Peace Prize (sound familiar?) for helping to broker the end of the Russo-Japanese War, in which he absolutely favored the Japanese and sold out the Koreans, resulting in 40 years of brutal colonial occupation on the peninsula.

An interesting read: both an expose’ of American diplomatic naivete’, and a must for anyone who can’t understand the Koreans’ distrust of US intentions in this neck of the woods.

I, for one, am buying the book.

Yesterday (today back home) was the 68th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. The New York Times has this great essay, reflecting on what led up to the event. In 1905, that bloated imperialist asshat, Teddy Roosevelt, won the Nobel Peace Prize (sound familiar?) for helping to broker the end of the Russo-Japanese War, in which he absolutely favored the Japanese and sold out the Koreans, resulting in 40 years of brutal colonial occupation on the peninsula.

An interesting read: both an expose’ of American diplomatic naivete’, and a must for anyone who can’t understand the Koreans’ distrust of US intentions in this neck of the woods.

I, for one, am buying the book.



14 thoughts on “Infamy”

  1. Well, nice to point that

    Well, nice to point that out.

    But we can add more. USA virtually divided Korea (and therefore is completely responsible for the Korean war). Not only that, after the USA "freed" Korea from the Japanese rule, they made pro-Japanese Koreans in high government positions, and that goes on and on.

    What else? They approved violent military assaults to the Korean population such as the Gwangju incident, and constantly favored anti-democratization governments. Here is a quote.

    The 1980s marked a surge in Anti-Americanism in Korea, widely traced to the events of May 1980.[11]

    Kwangju convinced a new generation of young [Koreans] that the democratic movement had developed not with the support of Washington, as an older generation of more conservative Koreans thought, but in the face of daily American support for any dictator who could quell the democratic aspirations of the Korean people. The result was an anti-American movement in the 1980s that threatened to bring down the whole structure of American support for the ROK. American cultural centers were burned to the ground (more than once in Kwangju); students immolated themselves in protest of Reagan’s support for Chun. [12]

    Fundamental to this movement was a perception of U.S. complicity in Chun’s rise to power, and, more particularly, in the Gwangju massacre itself. These matters remain controversial. It is clear, for example, that the U.S. authorized the Korean Army’s 20th Division to re-take Gwangju – as acknowledged in a 1982 letter to the New York Times by then-Ambassador Gleysteen.

    [General Wickham], with my concurrence, permitted transfer of well-trained troops of the twentieth R.O.K.A. Division from martial-law duty in Seoul to Kwangju because law and order had to be restored in a situation that had run amok following the outrageous behavior of the Korean Special Forces, which had never been under General Wickham’s command.[13]

    However, as Kwangju Uprising editors Scott-Stokes and Lee note, whether the expulsion of government troops left the situation lawless or "amok" is very much open to dispute. But the gravest questions pertain to the initial, triggering use of Korean Special Forces. The United States has always denied foreknowledge of their deployment, most definitively in a June 19, 1989 white paper; that report additionally downplays Gleysteen’s and others’ characterizations of the U.S. actions.

    …Ambassador Gleysteen has stated that the U.S. "approved" the movement of the 20th Division, and a U.S. Department of Defense spokesman on May 23, 1980 stated that the U.S. had "agreed" to release from OPCON [operational control] of the troops sent to Kwangju. Irrespective of the terminology, under the rights of national sovereignty the ROKG had the authority to deploy the 20th Division as it saw fit, once it had OPCON, regardless of the views of the U.S. Government.[14]

     

    Two things come to my mind when I read about that kind of things: Why the F**K is the US constantly messing up with other’s countries business, and why the hell did they authorise a such massacre.

    And after that uneducated people say that the US actually "helped Korea" during the 20th century, HAHA, what a joke. Everybody knows the US always "help" other countries from pure good will, right? I went to Vietnam too, same bloody story there. That’s what I call an international criminal country. Way to make mass murders legal, just be a big country. (and create wars).

    And after that I hear, again from uneducated people, that Korea wants the US army to stay in Korea. Open your bloody eyes, the US army is in Korea for a bloody purpose, and remember that the US never spends money from good will. If Korea does not "want" the american army to leave the country, it’s because they know if they do so, they will have to pay something back, that will probably cost much more. What a sad story, I hate America. I mean I despise it.

    Reply
    • wacky

      Wacky, all your arguments might be taken more seriously if you didnt come from a place of anger and bitterness. Being able to see multiple sides of an issue is a sign of intelligence. Keep that in mind and you might not come off like such a one-sided, kneejerk nutjob all the time. Literally all. the. time.

      Reply
    • That’s Great, Because America Hates YOU.

      Many Koreans DO want the American military here, for a variety of reasons.  To deny this or brush people off who believe this as "uneducated" only serves to make you look like the moron with his fingers in his ears.  You may not like it, but this is a fact.  I’ve been asking adult and uni classes about troop presence for five years now, and I can tell you that the vast majority wish them to stay.  Carter was going to remove all of the troops in the late 70’s, and President Park almost had an aneurism.  It was only after much pleading by the Korean government and members of his administration that Carter reversed his decision.

      The US certainly has a lot to answer for in its foreign policy, but for you to point the finger and foam at the mouth just shows you to be the tired, knee-jerk, cut-and-paste anti-American that you are.  I’ve heard your schtick before, sparky.  Time for some new material.

      A couple things:  Big Bad Americans are not responsible for Gwangju.  Big Bad Koreans are.  They acted on their own, and even if the US military authorities looked the other way, it doesn’t shift the vast majority of culpability from the regime (and soldiers) at the time.  But Koreans love to blame anyone but themselves for their own problem.  This is a nation boogeyman hunters.

      Also, the US did divide the Korean Peninsula, ALONG with the Soviet Union.  Somehow the involvement of Stalin’s Russia gets conveniently forgotton about by all the America-haters out there.  Yes, the 38th parallell was chosen by two ignorant State Department functionaries, but Russian insisted on the division, and they were a serious power at the time.

      I’m an American and a big critic of our foreign policy and blunders in history, but your spittle spraying hatred makes me want to take a piss on your shoes.  You are the same skidmark who, on a recent comment thread, claimed that "America has the highest crime and murder rate in the world," when it’s not even in the TOP 20.  You simply made it up to suit your argument.  You MADE IT UP.  When I challenged you on it you quickly changed the subject.

      So I will assume that anything you post here is pulled out of your ass, since you’ve demonstrated such proficiency at it before.

      You, sir, are a champion douche.  Jog on, now…

      Reply
      • Did I say big bad Americans

        Did I say big bad Americans are responsible for Gwangju? I simply said they approved the massacre, you are the one making things up. I’m happy you answer other people’s posts with such hatred and that you could find so many insults to shout to make your point, and all this without being moderated. Good job to the moderator of this site. you are a good example of how to totally lack respect without being moderated.

        I totally know and agree that Korea’s division is both because of the US and Soviet Union, but my post was aimed at a critic to the US government, not the Soviet one. And well, as a small analogy, when people talk about the second world war, they usually refer to the bad German Nazis who killed 6 million Jews, but I have seldom heard of the fact that the Japanese killed an estimated 30 millions Asians. It’s a bit the same story here, people tend to forget the Soviet’s participation in wars like Korea and Vietnam, and I agree it’s not necessarilly a good thing, and I will go as far as apologize to you in scarce that otherwise you will do an overdose of hatred against me.

        By the way, I don’t see why you refered to one of my previous post’s statement, which is totally out of context. When I said that, I told you after that I forgot to add "highest in the OECD countries" (instead of highest in the world). The same guy that was talking about Korea’s stats made the same error by saying Korea has the highest accident and suicide rate in the world or something.

        For the other guy, in my post I am clearly talking about US government’s policies. I have (in general) nothing especially against the american people themselves, (just against stupid people in general), but again, saying they are not responsible for everything the US is doing to the world is totally false. Way to blame others, I wonder which is the bogeyman hunter’s nation. You get the government you merit. If countless idiots were elected during America’s history, such as my two favourite, Reagan and Bush, that’s because people actually voted for them.

        All I did was criticizing the US policies toward Korea, I don’t see why I’m receiving such hatred responses to my post. I gave a quote, and I said that if the US army was in Korea, if was for a bloody reason. I mean is it this hard to believe? Why in the world Koreans would truly want (or need) the American army to stay in Korea? Unless it’s because they don’t want to have something to pay instead, in case they leaved. Is there actually anybody out there believing that the US made war in Iraq (or Vietnam, or Korea, or Afganisthan) for their own good? For the pure sake of "democracy" and "truth"? Why are they even still in Iraq? Why would Koreans need American army on their soil? Don’t give me the shit "it’s because they "protect" Korea in case of a North-Korean attack". They simply just want to mess with other countries policies and establish army bases everywhere in the world. I mean for christ sake there are even some swiss army bases in Korea. South and North Korea cannot even meet or talk together in privacy, they have be with at least 4 other countries, including Japan and the US! How funny! What if the US didn’t want Korea to be unified?

        And you, sir, pieceofmeat, I guess that name describes you well. With all your hatred and the number of insults you could shout me, I cannot guess anything else but  that you are a frustrated uneducated idiot. Make you point with a decent language.

         

         

        Reply
  2. oh Wak

    More pro Korean rhetoric. Hating people for where they are born, which is no fault of their own, shows great ignorance. Your positions are usually quite ignorant to. One sided-straight from the Korean education system.

    Reply
    • Oh and Jay Vander, I will

      Oh and Jay Vander, I will teach you a basic English lesson today. When you want to say "also", if you use the synonym "too", it takes actually two "o’s", not one. Repeat after me: your positions are usually quite ignorant too.

      I’m pointing that out because you obviously don’t know how to write such a simple word, as I could deduct from the other post you also wrote to me, which has again the same mistake (along with others of course).

      You wrong about suicide and diorce to.

      And maybe you don’t know what the word "rethoric" means? Because I gave my opinion along with facts. I don’t feel I did any pro-Korean rethoric. Sound more like anti-American criticism, don’t you think?

      And I will repeat it again, I am not Korean, I was born and raised in Canada from Canadian parents. Believe it or not, I absolutely don’t care, but if I was Korean, I don’t see why I would lie about it.

      Reply
      • Unlike Jews,

        Asians have never been a minority population.  Probably why people talk more about what the Nazis did to the Jews than what the Japanese did or what the Russians did.

        Reply
        • “Asians have never been a

          "Asians have never been a minority population.  Probably why people talk more about what the Nazis did to the Jews than what the Japanese did or what the Russians did."

          So you put all the Asians on the same basket? Filipinos, Thais, Vietnamese, Chinese, Malay, Burmese, Indonesians, they are just "Asians" and therefore not a minority? And the Jews? We could call them middle easterns? Are they a minority? Even if they are a minority, what does it change? The fact that we never hear about Japan that killed, tortured and commited the worst atrocities imaginable to millions and millions of humans during the second world war is pretty interesting don’t you think? It’s always the germans, it’s very funny. Every single movie about the second world war never shows Japanese atrocities! I think that the killing 30 millions humans by a single nation during a war is not enough to be widely criticized and told over and over, there is a big fucking problem. Who control Japanese army now? Nobody. Who even care if they say the East Sea is their, as well as Dokdo island? Nobody.

          And worst, Japanese try to hide all the historical facts, and they barely apologized to anybody! Which is the opposite for the Germans, who at least teach children at school what really happenned so it never happens again, and they constantly felt regretful for all what happened.

          Let’s get this further: One of the famous Japanese shrine, the Yakusuni shrine, where are buried more than hundreds and hundreds of war criminals, is being visited regularly by Japanese government officials and prime ministers! It’s like if the chancelor of Germany would go pray at the tomb of Joseph Goebbels, Henrich Himler and Adolf Hitler. And yet, (almost) nobody criticizes Japan! Amazing! Here is a quote about that shrine:

          In 1959, the kami of 1,068 executed as Class-B or C war criminals by Allied Forces military trials were enshrined at Yasukuni.[43] In 1978, the kami of 14 executed or died in prison who were sentenced or suspected as Class-A war criminals by IMTFE were enshrined at Yasukuni.[44] According to a memorandum released in 2006 by Imperial Household Agency Grand Steward Tomohiko Tomita, enshrined Class-A was the reason Emperor Hirohito refused to visit the shrine from 1978 until his death in 1989.[45][46] Since the enshrinement, there have been calls from some groups of people to remove the war criminals from Yasukuni Shrine. Shrine officials have stated that unlike traditional Shinto shrines, all enshrined kami are immediately combined and therefore become impossible to be separated for removal.[47] There has been no move to separate the enshrinements.

           

          If you want to read more, visit this link, it’s a good read. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yasukuni_Shrine

           

          Reply
          • The height of ignorance: “So you put…”

            "So you put all the Asians on the same basket? Filipinos, Thais, Vietnamese, Chinese, Malay, Burmese, Indonesians, they are just "Asians" and therefore not a minority?"

            Um, ahh, I’m not sure how to tell you, but Filipinos, Thais, Vietnamese, Chinese, Malay, Burmese, Indonesian, Korean, Japanese -they are all racially classed as Asian.  I think you may have some self-hate issues.

             

            "And the Jews? We could call them middle easterns?"

             

            Jew is an adjective or noun used to describe a member of a religion -not a race.  The basis of this religion was originally in the Middle East, however, for the last 1000+ years there have been pockets of Jews in Europe and abroad -most of which have never been to the Middle East.  ‘Jew’ is not a race; Asian is.  It would be like saying ‘Christian’ is a race -yet they come in all colors and flavors. 

             

            Once again, I say, correctly, that ‘Asians’ are not a minorty and Jews are and always have been.  Yes, ’30 million killed’ Asians is sad and terrible; but if you look at it via a percentage, 30 million from 1+ billion, compared to 6 million from 18+ million Jews (at the time of World War 2), well, yes, we’d probably talk about the group that was nearly eradicated and not the group that still had 900+ million left.

             

             

             

             

  3. lol wak

    Check your grammar and spelling to buddy. If i knew i was being graded on that and not the facts perhaps that would be important but i like how you try to deflect from the issue that you are wrong-yet again.

    Yes divorce and suicide are the highest among OECD countries. Yes korea ranked last among OECD countries for social spending and so on. Yes teachers do not get paid well here-not even close to what you are suggesting which was near the top of OECD countries. And yes some hagwon workers get paid that little. And no i was not born in america. And even if i was it does not change simple and easy tol ook facts. You have been blinded by years of thinking Korea is the bomb via the tunnel like education here. Anytime you want to debate facts-not positions based on pride-which is just another term for insecurity, I would be happy to.

    I can say many not so great things about many countries but here we are talking about Korea because of your ignorance. Look stuff up. I can go on and on about the problems here in Korea. You are a fly on the wall that can’t see the whole picture. Someone who can be objective-see the whole picture because he has not been brain washed (and can read studies printed about the above stats) surely can have more of an open mind to see not so great facts than someone who is living in a cave for the mind.

    And bro, I live here. My wife is Korean. I do not mind living here obviously but that does not mean there are not serious social problems here. Suicide for students and so on number 1. Divorce, after a short decline due to a new law that was passed is sky high again. The US army wanted to pull some troops out but the gov said no-even though the american army pays billions to be here.

     You sound angry. I am just talking facts as I read them in the paper and so on. I am not attacking anyone and saying things like Korea sucks or the people are bad. Korea is getting better with regards to the problems here but when people choose to attack others instead of take care of their own backyard, the problems take time to corect. And that goes for you to. You just attack but the facts are there. Why you can not accept them is on you. Be angry but if you are going to spout ignorant claims, be ready to be called on them.

    I am happy to be here and happy to be doing what i am doing so attack away but it really is just sad and says a lot about you and your own issues. We are all people. We don’t choose our nationality and where we are born so to be patriotic and talk crap in defence of things is kinda dumb. I am not a label. I am a person who just wants to be happy. Don’t we all? Thus, I think,  we are all the same. We try to get there differently because of our socialization but what makes what we have been taught right? It is ignorant to think so, so relax about Korea and try to open your mind to the truth about not jsut Korea but yourself. Take care of whatever issues you have and maybe to you will be able to find happiness. But arging for the sake of arguing but not having the facts is weak. The one post another person had all the stats but you are still saying it is not true? Crazy man! There are many problems here. That is just the way it is. Peace!

    Reply
  4. grammar???

     

    You wrong about suicide and diorce to.

     

     

    You are not Korean but you construct sentences like this? This is copied and then pasted from your last post-the one going on about grammar…lol

    Reply
    • Sorry but I’m going to have

      "You wrong about suicide and diorce to.”

       
      You are not Korean but you construct sentences like this? This is copied and then pasted from your last post-the one going on about grammar…lol
       
       
      Sorry "Jay Vander" but I’m going to have to laugh seriously hard on that one. I was QUOTING YOU from you post from the other thread. Please read my post at least correctly (and yours too), otherwise I’m going to think that beside not being able to type, you cannot read either. Are you really retarded that much or what?? Even after my grammar spelling lesson, you managed to make the same mistake once again during your first sentence. Truly pathetic.
       
      Check your grammar and spelling to buddy.” (I repeat, this was quoted from Jay Vander)
       
      Here let’s go one more time: When you want to say "also", if you use the synonym "too", it takes actually two "o’s", not one. Repeat after me: Check your grammar and spelling too buddy.
       
      How can I even take any of your bulls**t seriously? Where did you pick up your wife? In a bar? And your degree? On the internet?
      Reply
      • Signal to Noise ratio

        This thread is an example of why I want the moderation policies concerning insults and personal attacks to be enforced.  What started as a substantive discussion about US-Korea relations has degraded into a "You’re an idiot. No, you’re an idiot!’ battle between Jay & Wakold.  Signal lost, noise wins.  

         I’ve also added a ‘no correction to grammatical and spelling errors’ clause to the posting policies.  If you really feel the need to correct someone’s grammar, please do so via PM.  Aside from wanting KB to be a place that is safe for non-native English speakers, these kinds of corrections add little to conversation, other than sparking flame wars and being annoying. 

        Again, if you want your comments to appear, stay on topic and leave the insults and corrections out.  I understand that some people really enjoy that kind of sparring.  Great, go somewhere else to enjoy it, because it’s not going to happen here.  

        I am finally back in Korea – ‘got off the boat’ Tuesday night.  After dealing with some settling in logistics and family stuff, very much looking forward to focusing on KB and getting things going for real – including putting together a Mod Team and publicly discussing posting polices and other site issues.  In the meantime, as always, please post comments and question about policies in the Koreabridge Stuff forum

        Thanks,
        Jeff

        Reply
  5. wikipedia? again?

    just so you know, wikipedia is not the best thing to use as a source for information, mr. wakold.  also, you are so negative towards the united states.  earlier you said you were from canada, but were naturalized there or something, white and not an english teacher.  would you please share with everyone what the reasons for your extreme combination of pro-korea and anti-american views are, exactly?  i find it very strangely fascinating.  i would bet three 500cc mugs of cass on it that other people who read here would like to know, too.  really.  most people on this site seem to be engish teachers at one level or another that are looking to buy, sell, and read about the goings on here.  very few get so riled up the way you do.  since you said you are not an english teacher, what is your job? is it in busan? 

    Reply

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